What Will Occur if You Are Detained by Store Personnel?

Interviewer: What happens, will security walk up and say, “Come with me” or something similar to that?

Dale: Yes, that is generally what they will say.

Interviewer: After that, are people taken into a room? Are they handcuffed? What is the typical chain of events that occur after being detained?

If You Refuse to Comply with Store Personnel, They Will Likely Report Your License Plate Number to the Police

Dale: No, they just take them to a room. Remember, these people most of them are not violent offenders. Only in very few cases do I see any resistance to the orders of the security personnel.

Interviewer: Are people allowed to say, “Leave me alone,” and just walk away? Or is that an additional violation or an offense if they just ignore the store personnel or say “Get away from me”?

Dale: If that occurs, the store personnel will get their license plate number and call the police.

Can You Be Physically Detained by Store Personnel if They Suspect You of Shoplifting?

Interviewer: Are the store personnel allowed to physically restrain somebody or just detain them?

Dale: It is important to note at this point that a large number of security personnel in these stores are off-duty or retired police officers.

Because of Their Backgrounds, Some Store Personnel May Physically Restrain You Until the Police Arrive

Interviewer: They’re used to exerting the authority and attitude that makes people comply with them, is that right?

Dale: Yes, and I have seen them use physical force in some circumstances.

It Is NOT Likely That a Store Will Decline to Pursue a Shoplifting Charge

Interviewer: Have you seen stores drop the charges or not prosecute, or is the climate today where they always prosecute?

Dale: They always prosecute a shoplifter.